INNOVATION DRIVING EFFECTIVE THREAT MANAGEMENT IN CYBERSPACE The new reality of cyberspace, as seen by CTM360, requires corporations to think more offensive defense, i.e. be able to identify and tackle threat vectors early, well before the threat can manifest as an attack and look to neutralize it, thereby defending home base. This approach not only enables companies to control their internal environment, but also empowers them to quickly resolve threats originating from cyberspace.
MIRZA ASRAR BAIG, CEO, CTM 360
Cyber threats evolve at a rapid pace and corporations often adopt incident response plans to prevent or remedy any damage. The traditional interpretation of incident response revolves around a preventive and reactive mind-set, one that binds practitioners to a wait-and-see approach heavily dependent on procedures and technologies; however, with cyber attacks appearing both targeted and opportunistic, it is increasingly difficult to justify giving attackers any leeway or time to mobilize an attack. CTM360 developed its offensive defense mind-set upon seeing how escalating external attack types were passively being addressed only once they impacted the perimeter or induced panic. In response, the company developed Cyber Incident Response capabilities that stemmed
A U G U ST 2017
from a clear grounding of how the dynamic threat landscape may be tackled preemptively. Currently catering to 25 of the Top 50 GCC banks, as well as a host of other entities in different verticals and geographies, CTM360 remains at the forefront of an ever-evolving cyber threat landscape and acts as a complementary layer of security to the IT security and Information Security departments. This gives cyber security coverage to organizations that may not hold a specialized department, function or expertise to truly understand, detect and then counteract against external threats. Whilst many solutions have jumped upon the cyber security bandwagon, few providers have successfully reconciled the true definition and role of different security functions. As per CTM360, a simplistic analogy towards defining
the roles of IT security, information security and cyber security may be mapped directly from the real world: (1) IT security mimics the role of the police, with the mission of enhancing the user experience but in a secure manner; (2) Information Security holds the mission of guarding information assets (not users), sits on the perimeter of an organization and best resembles the role of the army, i.e. securing both perimeter and critical information assets that may be anywhere within the organization; (3) lastly, Cyber Security focuses on attacks and not users or assets, requiring agility and innovation to keep up with changing variables, much like the role of an intelligence agency within an external threat environment (i.e. cyberspace); however, integrating the relatively new function of Cyber Security with Information and IT Security departments also remains a considerable organizational challenge, but much less than the current status where clear boundaries based on each function’s mission are not defined. CTM360’s cloud-based Cyber Incident Response Unit (CIRU) is the pivot of their comprehensive offerings, offered in modular form as a service. Team CTM360 does not require access to a company’s infrastructure or data and operates independently in cyberspace to detect, analyze and mitigate any malicious or suspicious activity that may have potential impact. This service offering performs fast incident response in cyberspace, ably supported by CTM360’s ability to strengthen a member’s security posture through internet-facing asset inventory and audit. CTM360 thrives on the key principles of determination, innovation and agility and has quickly flourished as a successful cybersecurity offering from the Middle East, one of a few profitable cyber security startups from the region. ë
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